In Germany, the AfD fuels the controversy over an anti-fascist film

In Germany, the AfD fuels the controversy over an anti-fascist film

The German far-right party attacks the anti-fascist film Und morgen die ganze Welt. He is due to represent the country at the next Oscars ceremony in April. With these attacks, the film industry fears that filming political films will become even more complicated across the Rhine.

These are small attacks, but which “horrify the world of cinema” across the Rhine, notes the magazine Der Spiegel. With its political weight, the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party intends to put its nose in the financing of the 7th art. He targeted Und morgen die ganze Welt (“And tomorrow in the whole world”), a feature film by Julia von Heinz, presented in 2020 at the Venice and Toronto festivals, and which Germany has chosen to present for the Oscar for best foreign film.

German cinema with little political commitment

German cinema with little political commitment

Inspired by the experience of its director, Und morgen die ganze Welt tells the story of a student, Luisa, who joins a fictional anti-fascist collective and questions whether violence can provide a legitimate political response to the rise of a movement. neo-Nazi. AFD, which since 2017 has been the third most represented party in the Bundestag and which enjoys certain weight at the regional level, took umbrage at the fact that the logo of the fascist party staged would recall its own.

At the end of November 2020, AFD filed a “kleine Anfrage an die Bundesregierung”, a request for a parliamentary inquiry in the form of questions addressed to the federal government. For training, unthinkable indeed that a film that would present it as undemocratic could receive public subsidies and represent the country at the Oscars.

These requests, which were valid mainly for their announcement effect, were easy to foil. In the name of freedom of expression and creation, the government argued that it was not entitled to comment on the content of a film or the criteria under which it could have been subsidized.

On the side of film professionals, the fear for the moment is less that the State interferes in the creative process than of seeing more scarce funding for political films. All eyes are on the “audiovisual councils” (Rundfunkrat) which run the nine regional public broadcasters. AFD now has a head office in seven of them.

However, “in Germany, public broadcasting has a big influence on the films that can be shot. Too much influence, say many in the industry. They blame the broadcasters for the overly timid side of German cinema, and it is true that politically engaged films find it difficult to obtain subsidies, ”recognizes Der Spiegel. The film Und morgen die ganze Welt was no exception to the rule: it could only be produced with French funding.

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